Dry or chapped lips are among the common and uncomfortable issues that most of us experience. The skin on our lips is much thinner and more delicate compared to the other parts of the body. Our lips are also exposed to various elements, such as sun, dry air, and cold, which make them more prone to dryness, flaking, peeling, and cracking. In addition to that, the lips also lack oil glands. This means that they can’t produce their own moisture.
Having dry and chapped lips can be a problem any time of the year. It’s because two of the biggest factors that affect the moisture in your lips are your environment and the ingredients that you apply to them. With this, how do you think you can prevent dry and chapped lips, and how can you moisturize them? If you have the same question in mind, you’re in the right place. Read on as we’re giving you some of the best tips for moisturizing dry and chapped lips.
1. Drink plenty of water.
Water affects the moisture levels of your body, no matter what the weather or climate is. This means that it is not only in the warmer months that your body craves hydration. When you drink less water, there will be less saliva production, which can make your lips feel dry. According to dermatologists, it is recommended to drink two glasses of water before each meal, or about six to eight glasses of water the whole day. You can also drink tea, as long as it does not contain caffeine. Why? It’s because caffeine is a diuretic that encourages fluid to leave the body, causing your lips to feel dehydrated.
2. Use a lip balm that is not irritating.
When you have dry and chapped lips, it is very important to apply lip balm. However, not all lip balms in the market will work well. Some people mistake discomfort like stinging, burning, or tingling as a sign that the active ingredients in a certain product are working. However, this is a mistake. When you apply a lip balm, and you feel these uncomfortable sensations, you are actually irritating your lips.
When you have chapped lips, you need to avoid certain ingredients when choosing a lip balm. These include eucalyptus, camphor, flavorings, fragrance, menthol, lanolin, salicylic acid, octinoxate, oxybenzone, phenol, phenyl, and propyl gallate. All of these can irritate your dry and chapped lips more.
When buying a lip balm for dry and chapped lips, you need to look for ingredients that can help them heal. These include mineral oil, shea butter, petrolatum, white petroleum jelly, castor seed oil, dimethicone, ceramides, hemp seed oil, and sun-protective ingredients like titanium oxide or zinc oxide. In addition to that, choose lip balms that are hypoallergenic and fragrance-free.
3. Apply a good lip balm or lip moisturizer several times a day and before sleeping.
If you are experiencing very dry and cracked lips, use a thick ointment like white petroleum jelly. This seals in water longer compared to oils and waxes. Apply it several times a day and before going to bed to ensure that your lips are always moisturized.
4. Apply a good lip balm with SPF 30 or higher when going outdoors.
When you are going outdoors, it is essential to protect your lips from the harmful UV rays from the sun. This is important even in the winter. It’s because the sun can burn dry and chapped lips easily, which could also trigger cold sores. Choose lip balms that have SPF 30 or higher and one that contains ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium oxide. When you are outdoors, you need to apply the lip balm every two hours.
5. Exfoliate your lips.
Chapped lips are covered in a layer of dry lips that can prevent the healing ingredients in lip balm and lip moisturizer from reaching the right area to moisturize. To solve this problem, exfoliating the lips using lip scrubs that contain sugar or baking soda is a good idea. Just make sure that you do it gently. Also, look for a lip scrub that contains ingredients that will soothe and moisten the lips.
6. Use a humidifier.
When you spend a lot of time in dry air, this can remove moisture from your skin and lips. This usually happens in winter. In addition to drinking plenty of water, it is also great to consider using a humidifier to add some moisture back into the air and prevent your lips from drying and chapping.
7. Do not lick your lips too much.
When you have dry lips, lip licking is probably the worst habit that you can have. Many people might think that doing this helps in hydrating their lips, but they are actually doing the opposite. This is because saliva has enzymes that are meant to aid in our digestion of food. Therefore, it is irritating on the delicate skin of the lips.
These are some of the best tips we can give on how to moisturize dry and chapped lips. Most of the time, these self-care tips can help heal dry and chapped lips in around two to three weeks. However, if you are experiencing something more serious, such as an allergic reaction that makes your lips feel dry and uncomfortable, it is important to see a dermatologist immediately. We hope this article helped you learn more about moisturizing dry and chapped lips.